Review by Shannon Shumaker
Nico Yaryan’s debut album, What A Tease is full of love, longing and passion. Every single song is brimming with emotion, from the slow start of “Old Gloria” to the brighter “Just Tell Me” and the somber yet beautiful final track, “I’ll Stay With You When You Die.” It’s impossible not to think of someone special while listening to these songs, and it’s safe to say that’s just how Nico Yaryan intended it.
The slow and soulful “Old Gloria” opens the album with simple yet beautiful guitar and vocals, really setting the tone for the album, which is full of love, longing and regret. Following the opener is “You Belong To Me,” which is impossible not to fall in love with. Vocally and lyrically, the song is flawless, telling of insecurities, doubts and longing, but most of all, Yaryan’s yearning for his long-distance lover.
“Just Tell Me” is the first bright and summery sounding song on What A Tease, carried by strong guitar work and upbeat vocals. The song tells of missing someone you love, and you can really hear the romance in this track, especially in the emotional and honest lyrics such as, “I don’t know where we’re gonna go/But I’ll go there with you.”
Where “Just Tell Me” picks up the pace, “Dreamers” slows things down again, carried primarily by piano. “Infinity” follows suit, though lyrically, the theme from “Just Tell Me” echoes in this song, in lines such as, “Just tell me you love me too/Just tell me your love is true,” which sound very similar to “Just tell me the love is strong.”
While the first half of What A Tease is more upbeat and catchy, the second half of the album takes on a much more mellow and folky sound. And thankfully, this change in sound is very gradual, flowing well from one song to the next. Easily some of the strongest songs on the album come toward the end as well in “Your Love Never Lets Me Down” and final track, “I’ll Stay With You When You Die.”
“Your Love Never Lets Me Down” is a beautiful song about unconditional love. Lines like, “You love me when I don’t love myself,” are stunning over simple piano. The song itself is very stripped down, keeping the focus on the vocals and lyrics. Then there’s “I’ll Stay With You When You Die,” which is a stunning conclusion that provides a deeper side to Nico Yaryan’s vocals that can’t be heard on the rest of the album. The result is a song that leaves listeners feeling fulfilled and lingering for more at the same time. These eleven songs tell stories of love and longing and even give a few life lessons along the way - you don’t want to miss What A Tease.
Listen to "Just Tell Me"
STAY CONNECTED WITH NICO YARYAN: https://www.facebook.com/NicoYaryan